Ever feel like a “less than” Momma? Do you struggle with not having “me time” to re-fuel and replenish? Or, do you have days when you feel ill-equipped to raise your child? Have you hit a wall with your sanity because you’ve been over and over the same issues with your kids yet reap no rewards for your hard labor? Like me, have you read every parenting book imaginable in hopes of discovering the secret of success?
I’m here to say you are normal. Now, if you are prone to live in any one of these places for too long, you may need to look outside of yourself and seek someone to talk to about the possibility of depression. Still, you’re not damaged, or un-fixable. Motherhood is not a job for the faint of heart. It’s important to know you are not alone on your journey and you are not the only one who’s ever had a certain problem with your child. If fellow Mommas would be real, authentic, and transparent with each other, I have a feeling we’d have fewer pity parties as we wouldn’t live in the comparison trap.
I recently watched a clip of a job interview taking place between the boss of a company and various prospective employees, all captured on video. Interestingly, the job description was laid out with the following “must have” qualifications. “To be considered for this job, you must be able to cook, have mad cleaning skills, be a teacher, a financial planner, shopper, counselor, negotiator, disciplinarian, nurse, manager of people, a taxi driver, event coordinator; oh, and you must be available at a moment’s notice. You’re required to work week-ends and holidays, and you don’t get sick days. Working 24/7 is a must. Oh, and before I forget, the job doesn’t pay anything.”
Seeing the faces of these poor, unsuspecting people in need of a job was hilarious! I mean they were incredulous at each and every requirement necessary for the job. Pure disbelief and ultimate shock that such mandates were being made. At the end of the video, the boss explained that the job being described was for that of a Mom. Each hopeful employee stared ahead like a deer blinded by a headlight before the boss’ words actually sunk in. Once the light bulb went off, each one laughed then smiled in fond remembrance of the Mom that raised them. It was a tearful moment as they replayed in their mind all of the things that a Mom does….all without pay, and oftentimes without a simple “thanks”.
Often, the things we beat ourselves up most about as a Mom, aren’t on a child’s radar. Children are incredibly forgiving! We as Moms, are our own worst critic. Sure, there is always room for improvement and each day offers new grace. Upon asking a child what they love most about his/her Mom, you’ll hear qualities such as, “she’s pretty”, “she plays with me”, “I like it when she jumps on the trampoline with me”, “she is funny!”, and “she lets me help her in the kitchen”. Simple, yet forever imprinted on their little hearts.
So try to see yourself through the eyes of your child(ren). Time is an invaluable commodity. Stopping what you’re doing to pay them attention and engage with them through play is huge! I’ll never forget how much fun it was as a child to see my own Dad skip down the aisle of a grocery store. I asked him to and he obliged. I’m sure inside he felt like an ig-mo skipping down the aisle of a store. I can imagine that anyone who witnessed his silly skipping knew in their heart he was doing it for his daughter. I loved it and giggled at the sight of it! Umpteen years later, this simple skip stands out in my mind as a happy, beloved memory between me and my Dad.